The assessment is bleak.
He is six years old. Small. Misbehaved. Troubled.
Both parents are drug addicts. Always in and out of jail.
He was born in prison and given to his paternal grandma to raise when he was six months old.
He doesn’t go to school because most days he gets in trouble and the teacher kicks him out of class, so he just runs away.
She can’t afford to pay someone to look after him, so Grandma locks him inside the house when it’s time for her to go to work as a sweeper at the downtown market. But his small frame can squeeze through the bars covering the windows and he escapes.
There’s a big supermarket nearby and it’s the perfect spot to beg for a few pesos.
DIF (child protective services) finally picks him up off the streets and places him in a shelter, until he’s returned to his home 10 days later. But unless something is done, it will only happen again.
And next time she will lose him. Permanently.
Their situation speaks of desperation and evil winning.
It’s one of those cases where you leave a home study just shaking your head in utter bewilderment thinking, goodness gracious, where do we even begin?
Grandma came to our door because she heard we take children.
We help her fill out an application and tell her we will call them once we have reviewed their application.
Then we peek through the office window and see her weeping in our front entrance. A grandmother distraught that her last hope of keeping her grandson might arrive a little too late.
How can we turn them away?
We assess and discuss and weigh and decide if we can handle just one more. Because in the midst of this poverty that is overwhelming and a situation that seems so desolate, one thing does not change – she does not stop loving this little boy.
She walks each day with this paradox of fear and anxiety and love and hope.
It is this love that compelled her to the gates of an orphanage, asking for help. Wondering whether she should leave her little boy where she knew he would be fed and clothed and educated and safe.
Then they were told there was another option. And they arrived at the doors of Roots & Wings.
And we say:
You can get help and you can keep your grandson. Because you see, you’re his mama now. And he needs his mama. And God didn’t make a mistake by giving him to you. He needs you more than he needs nice clothes or a fancy room or new toys. And we see in your eyes just how much you love him – and he adores you too.
So here we are, fighting for one more family to stay together.
Because we believe poverty should never be the reason a child is raised in an orphanage instead of with their family.
If you would like to sponsor Jose, send us a message or fill out our sponsorship application.